Jizo

Nobuhito Nishigawara, Santa Ana
Jizo

Arts 

‘Jizo’

Artist
Nobuhito Nishigawara, Santa Ana

Background
The 36-year-old, Japanese-born artist fuses traditional and contemporary images to create his sculptures. He is part of the Laguna Art Museum’s “OsCene 2010: Contemporary Art and Culture in OC,” a multimedia exhibit that surveys the diversity and influences of the local arts community.

Creation
Each sculpture starts in miniature, about 3 to 5 inches tall. “Making a small model is like drawing a blueprint,” Nishigawara says. “Jizo” is about 5 feet tall and took about three weeks to build. Made of water-based clay, the sculptures take roughly one month to dry before he fires them in a kiln for about three days. Then he paints the pieces.

Inspiration
Nishigawara, an assistant professor at Cal State Fullerton, focuses on the interplay of Japanese and American cultures. His influences include traditional Buddhist art, manga comics, and toys. “My pieces reflect our diverse multicultural society in which visual images are often borrowed without the full understanding of their original meaning.”

See It
“OsCene 2010” runs Feb. 21 through
May 16 at the Laguna Art Museum, 307 Cliff Drive, Laguna Beach, 949-494-8971, www.lagunaartmuseum.org.

 

Web Exclusive! Meet three other artists featured in the OsCene 2010 exhibit!

 

Front and Center

Spreading the Word
The late Martin W. Witte was an avid supporter of the Newport Beach Central Library, site of the authors forum that bears his name. This year’s lineup includes The New York Times’ David Sanger;  “Under the Tuscan Sun” author Frances Mayes; and former FDA chief David Kessler. We asked Lizanne Witte, Martin’s daughter-in-law, how it comes together.

Author Selection
“Speakers have shared their expertise on such subjects as Islam, health care, the global economy, and more.”

Feedback
“This crowd reads and appreciates the purpose a library serves in a community like ours. They also are impressed with our past speakers and feel honored to join their company.”

The Martin W. Witte Distinguished Speakers Lecture Series opens with Sanger on Feb. 19 and 20 at 1000 Avocado Ave., 949-548-2411, www.nbplfoundation.org.

 

Tidbit

Hover Craft

Greg MacGillivray’s IMAX film, “Arabia,” premiering this month, was shot using a chopper flown by the Royal Saudi Air Force

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